A career criminal has been jailed for 10 years for targeting the homes of elderly women across Sheffield.
Andrew Deeley, aged 50, of no fixed abode, struck at the homes of eight women aged between 73 and 96 last summer.
He posed as a security official to con his way into the home of his oldest victim - a 96-year-old from Greystones - claiming that he that he needed to check the security of her home.
Deeley drank a cup of tea with the pensioner before stealing £40 in cash and her handbag, which contained her purse.
He burgled homes in Heeley and Crosspool, four in Hackenthorpe and one in Grimsby.
Detective Constable Lee Morris, of South Yorkshire Police, said: “Deeley has used a variety of tactics to callously trick his way into peoples’ homes, cold-heartedly targeting the elderly and vulnerable, taking advantage of their trust and generosity.
“I want to praise the victims in this investigation for their courage and bravery in reporting the crimes Deeley committed against them, and reassure them and anyone else who is a victim of this type of burglary that they are not at fault or to blame in any way for these criminals inexcusable actions.
“I have known and dealt with Deeley for many years. The sentence reflects the serious nature of these offences.”
Detective Inspector John Wheaton, who leads the police team responsible for investigating burglaries in South Yorkshire, said: “If someone attends at your door claiming to be from a company or an official always ask to see a form of identification. Close and lock the door if you have even the slightest suspicion and contact the company they claim to work for.
“If they are genuinely who they say they are, they will have no issues with you confirming their identity.
“Distraction burglars or bogus officials are opportunistic and will attempt to gain entry to your home. If you have any concerns at all, contact the police immediately either on 101 or 999 in an emergency.
“I sincerely hope Deeley considers his actions and the traumatic effects they have had on his victims while he is serving his sentence.”